Bugsby's Reach, March 2014

Proof that not everything’s a done deal – and if you speak up, you can change things. Back in March, this website featured plans by the Port of London Authority to rename Bugsby’s Reach, the stretch of the Thames that passes Greenwich and Charlton, as Watermen’s Reach.

Well, thanks to people getting off their backsides and opposing it, the plan’s been scrapped. Bugsby’s Reach will stay Bugsby’s Reach.

There were a total of 47 responses to the consultation, breaking down as follows:

– 10 in favour
– 34 against
– 3 neutral

Those for the change cited the proposal as: ‘fitting commemoration of the river’s past, present and future working life.’

Those against the proposal felt that: ‘historic names should be left alone’; ‘Bugsby’s Reach is a local name reflected landward in Bugsby’s Way’; and ‘The lack of information about Bugsby’s background should not be a reason to remove his name.’

Having considered the balance and nature of consultation responses, we have decided not to proceed with the proposal to rename Bugsby’s Reach.

So it is worth responding to these things. And the PLA’s U-turn means the grisly history of Bugsby’s Hole will continue to be commenmorated, the debate over who Bugsby actually was can go on for many years to come.

3 replies on “Greenwich’s mysterious Bugsby fends off Watermen’s Reach”

  1. I responded to the PLA consultation expecting it to be the usual sham but giving a detailed argument anyhow – so congratulations to @portlondonauth for listening to me and the 33 other objectors. Also shows how few people do respond to consultation 47 in this case and how important it is that you respond if you have a view. Not sure why three people would have responded to say they don’t have a view either way though? Thanks to Darryl for highlighting PLA renaming in first place.

  2. I’d responded, too. It shows that even when just a few people respond to a consultation, they can have an influence. I was beginning to think that being part of the “green ink” brigade meant I was just balmy. Now I know that I am balmy, but I can make a difference too.

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